In view of the interest felt in the exact words
used by Mr. Asquith in his Albert Hall speech, we place them on record :—
"We shall not assume office, and we shall not hold office, unless we can secure the safeguards which experience shows to be necessary for the legislative utility and honour of the party of progress."
We may also quote the sentence selected by Mr. Redmond from Mr. Lloyd George's speech at the National Liberal Club on December 3rd :—
"For my part, I would not remain a member of a Liberal Cabinet one hour unless I knew that Cabinet had determined not to hold office after the next General Election unless full powers are accorded to it which will enable it to place on the statute. book of the realm a measure which will ensure that the House of Commons in future can carry Liberal and progressive measures in the course of a single Parliament either with or without the sanction of the House of Lords."
Our only comment is that though Mr. Asquith's words, if carefully read, do not, as a superficial view of them might suggest, really point to guarantees from the King, the words of his Chancellor of the Exchequer, however read, do point thereto, and do mean "No guarantees, no office." If Mr.
Redmond and his friends say that Mr. Asquith ought, the moment the Chancellor's speech was published, to have con- tradicted it as going a great deal too far, and that as he did not contradict it they were deceived, bow can they be answered ?